On the completion of Modi Government’s two years in office, the J&K has been gifted with first ever Seed Certification Unit on the constant persuasion of Minister of State in PMO, with Independent charge of North Eastern States, Youth Services and Sports, Dr Jitendra Singh. The unit will be most beneficial for the farming community in the State who otherwise had to be dependent on import of quality seeds from outside the State. The Union Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare has written a letter to Chairman and Managing Director Seed Corporation of India in this regard giving reference to Dr Jitendra Singh’s letter addressed to Agriculture Ministry on April 5 this year. The Agriculture Ministry has urged NSC to furnish its comments immediately in this regard. However, talking to Excelsior Dr Jitendra Singh said that the Ministry of Agriculture in Principle has agreed to establish the seed production facility in Jammu region of the State of J&K and the State Government has been asked to identify land at a centrally located place either in Udhampur or Kathua district. The Seed Certification Unit will not only provide quality seed and suitable to local climatic conditions of the State but will also provide employment to over 2000 people directly or indirectly including farmers and farm labourers. The farmers of the State will get seed at cheaper rates after establishment of the unit in the State as the transportation charges will be reduced. Moreover the seed produced locally will also give more yield than that purchased from outside the State as it will be grown under local climatic conditions. In his letter to Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh, Dr Jitendra Singh has said that agriculture plays a very important role in the State of J&K and over 70 percent of people are directly or indirectly dependent on it or its allied sectors. Thus it is crucial that this sector gets due support from the Government so that the large section of population which is dependent on this sector can sustain and prosper. The letter said “I am writing to you about an important issue relating to certified seeds availability in Jammu region for food grain production. Jammu region has a distinct agro climatic condition which consists of Sub tropical zone (Kathua, Samba, Jammu, part of Udhampur and Rajouri, intermediate zone parts of Rajouri, Udhampur, Poonch, Ramban and Kathua and temperate zone like parts of Poonch, Rajouri, Doda, Kathua, Ramban and Kishtwar’’. The letter further said a large part of the area is hilly terrain with fragile soil in hilly areas susceptible to soil erosion which limits the use of mechanized farming and puts constraint on irrigation of cultivated land. In view of this, the area specifically requires certified seeds appropriate for soil and climatic conditions so as to sustain continuous growth in productivity for which management is vital. Dr Singh in his letter said “ I understand that presently almost all the requirement of the seed for food grain production in this region is met by supplies form outside the State., There has been a long felt need to establish a certified seed production facility in Kathua/Udhampur under the aegis of Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agriculture and Technology (SKUAST) of Jammu’’. The letter further said “ I would be grateful if Ministry of Agriculture can through the National Seed Corporation Ltd or any such appropriate agency, take this issue forward so that this area can prosper further’’. Meanwhile, senior BJP leader and Samparak Adhikari of Dr Jitendra Singh, Sanjeev Sharma termed it a gift for the people of the State on the completion of two years of Modi Government. Talking to reporters here, today along with the Smparak Adhikari and National Executive Member BJYM, Bharat Sharma and another Seh-Samparak Ahikari Devinder Singh Wazir said that this will prove a big step towards welfare of farmers of the region in particular and State in general.
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